Study Programme

Initial courses are Drug Discovery and Drug Development and Regulation. Furthermore, you can freely choose projects and electives of interest to gain in-depth expertise in this multidisciplinary field.

The practical part of the Drug Innovation programme is unique. Instead of taking endless courses, I got to learn faster by actually doing things. I call this the “try-fail-learn-don’t forget” type of experience.
Programme scheme Life Sciences Master's
EC = credits (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System)









The programme includes the following components with the specified credit load:

  • Theoretical Courses (15 ECTS)
    Drug Discovery and Drug Development and Regulation
  • Major Research Project (51 ECTS)
    Choose a project within the Utrecht Life Sciences research groups: UIPS, at UMCU, Veterinary Medicine, Biology, or Chemistry
  • Minor Research Project (33 ECTS)
    Choose another project within Utrecht Graduate School of Life Sciences or research groups at other universities within or outside the Netherlands, institutes (RIVM, WHO, other), or companies (Nutricia/Danone, Novartis, other). You can also choose to do a profile.
  • Electives (12 ECTS)
    Choose from list
  • Writing Assignment (7.5 ECTS)
    Choose a project in collaboration with Utrecht Graduate School of Life Sciences, or other university in the Netherlands
  • Life Sciences Introduction course plus seminars (1.5 ECTS)
    Join ten seminars and summarise each in a portfolio

Educational methods 

  • Lectures 5 %
  • Introduction course plus seminars 5 %
  • Group work 5 %
  • Self-study 30 %
  • Internship 55 %

The exact differentiation of these educational methods is mainly dependent on the project types and the electives that you choose. For each course, the data in OSIRIS provide more information about the applied educational methods.

Examination methods 

  • Research articles
    For some of the research projects you will be asked to write your report in the format of an article like for a scientific journal
  • Presentations
    Oral presentations should be given to summarise all research projects
  • Assignments
    Are part of some courses or electives, mostly in group projects
  • Writing assignment
    Write a review article or a project proposal
  • Exams (oral/written)​

Life Sciences Academy (1.5 EC)

During the course of the Master’s programme, you are required to attend the Introducing Life Sciences week, at least seven Life Sciences seminars, and three workshops of the Navigation Towards Personal Excellence programme.


You can choose to replace your Minor Research Project with a profile. The profiles in Science Communication and Education consist of theoretical courses followed by practical work. The Management profile combines skills in the life sciences with courses in business and economics. The profiles in Applied Data Science, Bioinformatics or Complex Systems offen an interdisciplinary approach, in which you combine courses with a project or assignment on a specific topic/field.